Friday, 3 October 2014

Interview with Fashion Designer: Matcho Suba

Hello there! You may (or may not have) noticed I've been a little M.I.A lately. Well you can blame all of that on my final semester of uni! I'm hard pressed to do anything other than uni work but I may be doing a little extra design work on the side this month, you can expect to hear all about that soon!

You may remember I was doing an internship with the fashion designer, Matcho Suba, of Project Runway Australia fame. At uni we had an assignment where we had to interview someone in the industry and I thought "hey, why not Matcho?" and thus, my interview was born. I received a high distinction for it so I'm happy but just remember, I'm studying fashion design, not journalism!

You can see more of Matcho's work here!

Saturday, 30 August 2014

Eating From the Pantry Challenge


So this week I have set myself a challenge- to eat from the pantry. This means I have a limited budget to work with for groceries (only buying milk, bread, eggs plus fruit and vege on special)
I've seen many other bloggers and friends do the same thing and thought it was about time I joined in. While I will be eating out of the pantry, I will also be buying fruit and vege that is in season to make sure I am still receiving nutritionally beneficial food. 

I first took a tally of what was in my pantry- brown rice, wholemeal cous cous, packet soups, pasta, tins of tuna and chicken. 

I also had some leftover mince in my freezer which I will be pairing with the pantry staple, lentils, to bulk it out and get two meals out of it. 

I'm not saying my meal plan is delicious sounding but I am going to try my best! 



Have you ever done/thought about doing the pantry challenge? Will you be joining me? 
If you have an tips for this challenge or how to reduce grocery bills (in Australia so without coupons!) I would love to hear them!

-Grace

Friday, 29 August 2014

Strawberry & Blueberry Crumble


If you have a look at my last few posts you'll probably notice one thing- my massive sweet tooth. Nothing is more appealing to me than all that sweet, sinful goodness and wow, if you only saw my Dessert board on Pinterest! Well I have to do something to contain the sugar fiend within me so I usually turn to fruit (or dark chocolate!)

I figure, if I'm going to eat sugar it had better be beneficial to me in some way! In comes the simple fruit crumble. So simple to assemble, so versatile in flavours! Some people like to load their crumbles up with more sugar but really, they don't need it. 

Blueberries and strawberries are just like a beautiful match made in heaven- they're like one of those really hot couples that make you jealous of how good they look together, I mean come on!

Tuesday, 12 August 2014

Chocolate Peanut Butter Oats




For the past few weeks, I've managed to meal prep my lunches. However, waking up at 6:30am every day is really doing my head in and I tend to just skip breakfast or grab a yoghurt on the go. Not this week! This week I planned ahead and made a batch of my favourite oats to have on the way to uni. It seems really decadent to have chocolate for breakfast, but I promise you-these are healthy. There's only a few ingredients and you can tweak it at your will. Seriously though, the dates are mandatory! It's just not the same without them. 
These oats are perfect cold or hot!

Sunday, 10 August 2014

Week 1 & 2 of Clean Eating Challenge


If you've been following me on Instagram, you'll know that I've started back at uni and have also started an internship! I'm currently interning with Matcho Suba (of Project Runway fame) over Melbourne Spring Fashion Week, all while completing my final collection for uni (in which I have more garments to make than weeks to make them...). Me being me, I also decided to take part of an online 12 week challenge to get fit and healthy, as I felt that after last semester I had really let things lax.

I thought I'd show you what has been my first weeks of a clean eating lifestyle!


Monday, 14 July 2014

Raspberry, Strawberry and Kiwi Fruit Smoothie Bowl (my newfound obsession)



So if you've been following me on Pinterest you might have noticed my newfound obsession- Smoothie Bowls.




I don't know what it is about them- maybe their bright colours, careful layouts and delicious toppings- but I'm hooked. When I went grocery shopping this week I bought so much fruit and frozen berries just so I could try one. Oh my gosh am I glad I did....
It's like having dessert for breakfast! In fact, I made so much that I put some aside for dessert tonight! The beauty of smoothie bowls is that there is no limit to the imagination. For my smoothie bowl and subsequent dessert for today I made it like so:
Raspberry, Strawberry & Kiwi Fruit Smoothie Bowl

Sunday, 13 July 2014

Bourbon Cake with Bourbon Dark Chocolate Glaze






It was Byron's birthday the other day and as a special surprise I baked him a cake. Not just any ordinary cake, oh no. This cake has bourbon in it. Bourbon EVERYTHING. There's bourbon in the cake, bourbon in the buttercream and it's topped off with a delicious, dark chocolate glaze....with bourbon in it. 

He told me it was so good that I just had to put it on my blog, so here it is. 

Bourbon Cake with Bourbon Dark Chocolate Glaze

Monday, 7 July 2014

Flatbread Pizza with Baked Fries and Guac


Hello there! Remember me? I'm Grace, I write this blog, well I mean, I did... I may have dropped off the radar a while ago- my bad! Uni just likes to take over every aspect of my life, including my blog, but I only have one more semester. Oh my gosh... one more... That's hoping everything goes according to plan anyway!

So now I'm back with a vengeance whole lot of new recipes and things to share with you! I will be sharing my adventures at Fashion Design school with you in an upcoming blog post, as well as a rather delicious bourbon cake recipe. For now, I give you- FLATBREAD PIZZA.

This pizza has it all- grilled chicken, veggies, bacon, cheese and even chips with guac! But it doesn't have a dense pizza base which, let's be honest, who really enjoys anyway? (N.B: Apparently Byron does) My pizza had an aioli base but you can swap this for a tomato base- unfortunately I always get indigestion from tomato-based pizzas. Weird. Anyway, on with the recipe!

Monday, 5 May 2014

Chicken Burrito Pizza with Guacamole Sauce



That's right. You could call this recipe "Mexican" pizza I suppose, but I decided on burrito pizza because everything in here, I put in my burrito. It just so happened I had a spare pizza base lying around and decided to chuck everything on that instead.

At some point, I may or may not have contemplated throwing brown rice on the top, as this is what I usually put in my burrito, but I decided against it because I thought you might think I've gone crazy. And I couldn't be bothered cooking the rice. C'est la vie.

Please excuse my horrible pictures, Melbourne has been getting dark so early lately. Winter is coming.










Ingredients
- 1 pizza base
-2 avocados
-Half a brown onion, diced
-Half a red onion, sliced
-500g chicken breast
-1/4 cup corn kernels (can use frozen)
-0% fat Greek yoghurt (can substitute with sour cream)
-1 tsp ground cumin
-1/2 tsp Mexican chilli
-1 tsp smoked paprika
-1/2 cup cheese for topping

Method
- Preheat oven to 180 degrees celsius
-Make guacamole by mashing the avocados and mixing with the brown onion. Can add a little bit of Greek yoghurt to thin it out if you don't have enough avo, like I didn't. 
-Spread guacamole on pizza base.
-Slice chicken breast and toss in bag with spices. Add more as you go to get an even coating, being careful with the chilli. 
-Heat a little oil in a frypan and cook chicken on medium-high until cooked through. 
-Meanwhile cook corn in a frypan. Don't worry if it gets a little charred, it makes it tastier!
-Add chicken to pizza
-Top with red onion, corn and cheese.
-Put in oven for about 20 minutes.

I topped mine with a swirl of Greek yoghurt. Enjoy!

-Grace


Saturday, 12 April 2014

Slow Cooker Butternut Pumpkin Soup


This recipe is just so good and so versatile. It requires little effort and is hearty enough to keep everyone satisfied. I took some for lunch the next day and it was wonderful!
Just don't forget to temper the greek yoghurt (instructions below) or it will curdle.



Tempered yoghurt



Ingredients:


  • 1 large or 2 medium sized butternut pumpkins
  • 1 red onion
  • 2 cups vegetable or chicken stock
  • 1 tub 0% fat greek yogurt (can be replaced with sour cream)
Method:

  1. Peel, de-seed and chop butternut pumpkin into 1-inch pieces. 
  2. Peel and chop onion into quarters.
  3. Add to slow cooker.
  4. Pour stock over top.
  5. Cover and set slow cooker to low setting.
  6. Leave for 8-12 hours (depending on your schedule, the pumpkin just needs to be soft.)
  7. Scoop out onion.
  8. Blitz the soup using a hand blender or just pour it into your blender.
To temper yoghurt:
  1. Add 1/2 teaspoon of hot pumpkin soup to yoghurt and stir. 
  2. Continue to do this for about 5 teaspoons. 
  3. Yoghurt can now be added to soup or stirred in. 

Tuesday, 1 April 2014

Design: What I've Been Up To In My Final Year Studying Fashion Design

I've been a bit lacking lately, and for that I'm sorry. It's my final year of uni, studying Bachelor of Fashion Design and well, things get pretty hectic.

I've also been involved with some awesome projects recently!

This semester's design brief is Bio-Dynamic. As soon as I heard that, a quote came instantly to mind;

"We are made of star-stuff."

Carl Sagan said this and it's always made me think. So I started compiling inspiration and ended up calling my collection "Micro/Macro: Organised Chaos", comparing natural patterns to orbital patterns.
Here's my moodboard:








I've also been doing a bit of trend research.
It's exciting because we get to do menswear for the first time and I'm actually more looking forward to that than the womenswear.

Monday, 31 March 2014

Birthday Week Meal Plan


That's right, it's my birthday this week (yay?). I'm not too excited, mainly because I have uni on my birthday and it will be a full week of uni while I'm at it. Monday-Friday. With bonus assignments due! Sometimes I wonder why I chose this. I'll remember soon, won't I?

Also some rather exciting news;

Wednesday, 19 March 2014

Healthy Cheat Meal- Sweet Potato Chili Fries





I've finally shared my sweet potato chili fries with you! You can thank me as you devour these bad boys! 



-Grace


Sunday, 16 March 2014

Healthy Beginnings Meal Plan March 16-22
























I've titled this week's meal plan as 'Healthy Beginnings' as a number of things have occurred recently in my life prohibiting my usual healthy lifestyle.
My attitude. Uni. Falling behind. And unfortunately, the death of a loved one. My aunty passed away on Friday morning after a long battle with lung cancer. I managed to send her a video message telling her how much I loved her before she passed and I'm really glad she got to see it. I would hate for someone to pass away not knowing how much they meant to me. That's why it is so important to repeatedly tell those close to you how much you love them. The world is unpredictable.

So I'm starting this week afresh. My aunty's funeral is this Wednesday and even though I can't physically be there, I will be holding my own day of remembrance and reflection in honour of her.

Along with this, I'm kicking away my bad habits that have been building up since uni started this year. On with my meal plan.

Sunday, 2 March 2014

Meal Plan 2nd-8th March


My meal plan for this week!

I negated to put my snacks on but I did get 5 for $5 (uhh... maybe 10 for $10) Chobani this week. The pouches are so handy for uni!

Lunches:

Monday- Buffalo Tofu Salad
Wednesday- Roast vege wrap made with leftovers from night before 
Thursday- Taralynn McNitt's 'Yummy yummy Sunday Salad'. She honestly has the most fantastic       salad's (well maybe half-baked harvest can compete- I can't decide!)
Friday- Boring salad sandwich (but not so boring because I have forever loved them)

Dinners:

Tuesday, 25 February 2014

Eating Healthy At A Music Festival



*UPDATE- Wow, security was slack this year! There were no sectioned off mosh pits, I didn't have my ID checked and I could have taken a backpack, after all! A lot different to last years intense bag search and no backpacks in the mosh rule! *

With Melbourne's Soundwave coming up on Friday, I thought I'd share my tips with you about eating healthy at a music festival. Firstly, I have a horrific food-related story to tell (feel free to skip ahead- I'll never know!)

One day, years ago, in a place called Brisbane, a Soundwave Music Festival was on.
At the time, I wasn't a healthy eater. I wasn't large yet but, boy, would I get there in the next couple of years. Byron and I saw some great bands but we got a little hungry so we headed to the food district. There were large lines but we didn't care- Saosin were playing at the stage close by and we could see and hear them.

We chose the line for a Mexican food truck, excited at the possibilities.

Sunday, 23 February 2014

Back To Uni Meal Plan


What a week it's been, and not in a good way! I've been trying to get everything organised before I go back to uni (buying stuff I need, doing last minute assignments that they decided to throw at us last week of holidays...) and then I spent my entire Friday crying over something as ridiculous as money. Alas, I am a student and perpetually poor but I won't bore you with my woes, I'm sure you have your own. We had planned to attend Melbourne's White Night but the thought of the crowds and the fact that we were too tired (okay, okay Lion King was on tv) meant we stayed home. 

Let's escape for a while and plan ahead for the week. This week is done and dusted and even if I'm starting uni this week, it's a new week with all new possibilities. 

Wednesday, 19 February 2014

Crystal Castle Adventure






I'm sitting here, drinking green tea and reflecting on my adventure to Crystal Castle. Have I told you I'm tea-obsessed? I love the stuff. I think I just like hot drinks actually... 


Here's one of my (many) tea pots. 


And my little tea centre that my mum bought me from an antique store. Isn't it divine?

Sunday, 16 February 2014

Meal Plan 16-22nd Feb


I am on a tight budget for the week! It's almost back to uni time and I'll have to be more in control of my finances so I can pack my lunches- though I've already been stashing things that have been on special like juice and muesli bars. So this week I had to be ultra-thrifty with our dinners!

Oh, I've also got some exciting news to share!

Saturday, 15 February 2014

Hiking In Northern NSW



I've got such a picture-heavy post for you today, I hope you don't mind. I was going to add my trip to Crystal Castle in this post but I think that will have to wait until next time! 

I stayed with my parents in the Tweed Shire of Northern New South Wales, Australia where they live on 110 acres of rainforest and paddocks. 

Monday, 10 February 2014

Meal Plan 9/2/14 -15/2/14


'm a day late with this meal plan but I'm pretty sure I have a good excuse- my mother surprised me with flights to the Gold Coast so I could be with my Dad on his birthday last Sunday! That is also why you'll notice my meal plan says "Byron's choice" under the first three days- I won't be there to cook for him so I bought him a few ingredients (read: meat) and he can make his own meals from that. He said I was fussing over him too much but I knew if I didn't, he'd eat badly or not at all!

So here it is for the week:

Wednesday, 5 February 2014

Meal Planning 101 + My Week's Meals


When I first moved out of home, I was the kind of person who did not plan meals. I could cook and I had a few staples in the pantry or easy meals like boxed Mac&Cheese but I hardly ever planned anything. It didn't help that I walked past the supermarket on my way home every day so I'd just pop in and grab what I wanted.

This was costing between $20-$40 every single day. And that's for two people.

And so I got larger and larger and had little energy, self-esteem or cash in my pocket. I guess I reached breaking point. I dropped down to part-time at uni but I was still at the cusp of overweight, lazy and poor. It took a while to get out of my funk and a part of that I owe to changing my lifestyle.

I started running even though I had asthma as a child and NEVER ran without my lungs giving up on me.

I switched from unhealthy alternatives to healthier versions.

I started eating MORE. You read that right. More.

I started eating breakfast even though all through high school I suffered stomach problems related to anxiety and had hardly ever eaten breakfast.

I snacked on fruit, I packed my lunch for uni rather than buying it. I stopped getting take-out and fast food. I haven't had McDonald's since October 2012 and I've never looked back. It just doesn't even appeal to me any more.

And I started meal planning.

Saturday, 1 February 2014

Nachos with a healthy secret (you won't believe what it is!)

In my past, unhealthier days, one of my go-to weeknight meals was beef nachos, loaded up with cheese and topped off with some Doritos and a large dose of sour cream. I'm largely blaming that and spaghetti and my warped sense of dieting to the weight I put on around that time.

But all was not lost. I lost the weight but boy do I still get cravings for nachos, so I knew I just had to make them better for me.



Here's what I did. I replaced:

Doritos with my own homemade corn chips.
Sour Cream with 0% Fat Plain Chobani
Full fat beef mince with lean turkey mince (feel free to use lean beef mince, turkey mince is just cheaper and honestly you can't tell it's not beef)



And maybe I hid something extra special in there that nobody ever notices... That's right, I hid zucchini in there. I'm a chronic veggie hider, I can't help it!


Monday, 27 January 2014

Valentine's Day Lunchbox

I just love to celebrate any holiday I can get my hands on, I swear. Of course I adore Valentine's Day. I used to spend all day Valentine's Day waiting for a rose from a special someone. I never got one until I met Byron and then the next Valentine's Day he had 20 delivered to me at school. It was very romantic and it was more than anyone else got. I was swept up in the romance that day and have been ever since.

That was a long time ago though. Things are still quite romantic but we're not in high school any more! On Valentine's Day, Byron is usually working while I'm still on uni holidays. That makes it the perfect time for me to go the extra mile and put in some effort. I like to make Byron a packed lunch to take with him to work. I don't like to make things too over-the-top because I don't want to completely embarrass him in front of his colleagues (especially this year as he starts a new job!). And of course, I like to keep things healthy with maybe just a little sweetness thrown in to celebrate.

This year is no exception.

Friday, 24 January 2014

Healthy Apple Crumble Made From Juice Pulp

I have been on a real dessert fix lately. My body almost expects it an hour after dinner and if I don't get it, I go to bed cranky. I will not let my cravings undo all my hard work! To combat them I knew I had to make a healthy substitute that I wouldn't feel bad about eating after dinner. I've also been juicing a lot and have been keeping the pulp like some sort of mad woman in the hopes I will make something from the remainders.


Here comes the solution: healthy apple crumble made with leftover pulp from my juice! I used the apple juice in an apple, beet, carrot and cucumber juice and it was delicious.


Tuesday, 21 January 2014

Aussie Barbecue Salad

Barbecue season is finally here in Australia! A typical Aussie barbecue consists of meat, meat and more meat (sometimes of the shrimp/prawn variety) but it doesn't have to be this way. Heck, you can even make a grilled salad on your barbecue! And that's just what I did.


Monday, 20 January 2014

My Grief This Past Week

I've had a horrible week. I mentioned how we had 40 degree+ Celsius days lately. Well on the final day of the heat wave my two rabbits suffered heat stroke and passed away. They had a frozen bottle and weren't in the sun and I had intended on bringing them inside like I had every other day of the heat wave but a small visit to my landlord turned into a two hour visit. When I went to bring my bunnies in they already had too high temperatures and we treated them before rushing to the vet, who unfortunately could not save them. 

I loved Annabel and Hazel very dearly and only wish I could redo that day. They were a part of my life for over five years, almost six. 

Here they are:


I need to get out of the funk I'm in. I'm quite an emotional person so I've been crying every day and dreaming about them. I had their picture framed to put on my wall and my cat Winnie out of nowhere climbed onto the table and stared at the picture for a good minute. It was so strange but such a beautiful moment as she loved the bunnies too. 

I only hope that my story can be a reminder of just how fragile our bunnies and other pets are, especially in such extreme weather circumstances. 

This has affected me deeply. I still see their brand new hutch that my dad built just sitting empty outside. I cut up carrots for dinner and didn't have any bunnies to give the scraps to. I wondered if I would still buy carrots in bulk.

Each day gets a teensy bit easier. I'm waiting for my mum to get back from holidays so I can call her and have a good cry to her over the phone. Maybe after then the healing will begin. 

This post is dedicated to Annabel and Hazel (2008-2014). 

-Grace


Wednesday, 15 January 2014

Australia Day Party Ideas


Ah, Australia Day. Having a barbie, sipping something cool, trotting about in my thongs (for your feet, people) and listening to Triple J's Hottest 100. It's one of my favourite times of the year. And because I love any excuse for a party, I've thrown together a list of decorating, food and drink ideas so you can host a bloody good Australia Day party too!

Friday, 10 January 2014

Goals for 2014



With the new year comes the inevitable "what am I going to do differently this year" contemplation. I've had a good week to think about it, I don't usually rush to make a new year's resolution. 

So here's my personal goals for the new year. To achieve them, I'm going to break them up into smaller tasks that are easier to achieve. 


01. Finish my final year of uni
This one is scary. Final year of my Fashion Design degree. We have to do a collection and menswear and millinery! That excites me and terrifies me at the same time. Now to break it up into "bite-size" goals. 

-Don't be afraid to ask for help.
     Sometimes I struggle with this. I know this because my tutors point it out to me time and time again.                  Sometimes I just get overwhelmed in class because of the pushiness of other people but I do have a card up      my sleeve. One of my friends from uni who is particularly good at a subject that I am particularly hopeless at      is taking time off and as such, has offered to help me. I will definitely be taking her up on it this year!
-Take time to de-stress at the end of a day.
     I usually do this by reading, running, taking a bath or just sitting and breathing. But this year I will need to do      it way more often. 
-Get on top of everything from the start.
     I know every student says this at the start of the year and it's super hard to go from holiday mode back to uni      mode but I have to this year. Recognise what I find difficult and get the easy stuff out of the way so I can          focus on those other things. 

02. Be financially secure
I don't mean be rich but by the end of the year I would really like to be saving and not scrambling for cash every bill that turns up. To do this I will:
-organise my finances using a guide so I can recognise what bills come when and realise how every cent counts
-go out less, get less takeaway coffees
-try to make a bit of pocket money from the markets

03. Be organised
I seriously double-booked myself so many times last year! Before I go back to uni I want everything nice and organised. To do this I will:
-remember to schedule important events
-once I know my timetable I'll schedule everything around it including cleaning, homework etc

04. Blog more
Of course I want to blog more! I enjoy it! I'm going to try and get some posts knocked over in my time off because there is still so much I want to share with you. I'll never run out of recipes!

05. Read more
I consider myself a reader so I was very shocked when I looked at my Goodreads account and realised I had only read ten books this year. It honestly felt like so much more. That's less than one a month! This year I've got a few books lined up already and I'm halfway through 'Mansfield Park' now. I've also started downloading audiobooks to listen to on my runs. So far I'm a quarter of the way through 'The Fault In Our Stars' by John Green and I'm really enjoying it. This year there will be more!

And as always, I will try to be the best person I can be by living a healthy life and always helping others when I can.  

Do you have any goals for the new year? 

-Grace
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